Home insulation: Lower energy bill and other benefits
Many homes are still insufficiently insulated. Usually these are houses built until the eighties of the twentieth century. But even in homes of a later period a lot of gains can be made by improving insulation. This profit is mainly reflected in a lower energy bill. Living comfort certainly plays an important role in improvement. Insulating a home can be done in various ways and is best carried out by a specialist company. This is often not such a drastic event.
History of home insulation
Insulating houses did not really attract much attention until three quarters of the twentieth century. At the same time as increasing awareness of the sustainable use of energy, homes were increasingly insulated. A number of periods can be distinguished, such as:
As a rule, houses built up to and including 1975 have little or no insulation.
From 1976 to about 1982, many houses have moderate insulation and only double glazing in the ground floor. Floor insulation was usually omitted. So there is still room to benefit from those houses by improving insulation.
In homes built in the period from 1983 to 1991, insulation is generally applied in the exterior walls, roof and floor, but the effectiveness of the insulation material is often poor. The top floor also often lacks double glazing. In case of major maintenance, improvement in insulation would be recommended.
Homes built after 1992 usually have good insulation. But in those homes, profit can be made by installing solar panels or installing a hot water pump, for example.
Insulate and energy bill
Saving on energy bills by better insulating a home largely depends on the type of home. Is it a terraced house, corner house, semi-detached house or detached house? In any case, a lot of heat is lost through the windows, the facade, the roof and the floor with poor insulation. The walls are also important in retaining heat. Cavity wall insulation, for example, gives a very high efficiency. The difference in the use of gas for the central heating system can be very different per house. A poorly insulated home consumes 3300 m3 of gas per year, while a comparable home that is well insulated can stay well below 1000 m3.
Benefits of insulation
If you want to insulate, it is best to have it done right immediately. This means that insulation material must be chosen with a high insulation value. Benefits of good insulation include:
- Less draft.
- Retain heat better.
- Less condensation on the windows.
- Warmer feet.
- Less energy consumption also means less CO2 emissions.
Less noise pollution and good visibility
An advantage of a well-insulated house is that less noise pollution is experienced from outside. It is also pleasant that the windows no longer turn on and the view remains good.
No major renovations and hassle
Insulating a house can often be done without major renovations and hassle. For example, cavity walls are processed from the outside and floors from the crawl space. The installation of double or triple glass is also done from the outside. Even if the frames have to be replaced, this can be done without mess in the house. What usually happens from the inside is the insulation of a roof or attic.
Insulating sometimes means completely closing off the outside air, so that there is no longer any ventilation. However, ventilation is necessary. By ventilating, the moisture content in the house decreases and harmful substances disappear.
Ventilation grilles at glass
It is therefore good when using double or triple glass to install ventilation grilles.
Wind pressure controlled ventilation grilles
In a well-insulated house, the cracks and seams are also closed. In that case, however, there is little ventilation. For health it is necessary that the house is sufficiently ventilated. This is possible with, among other things, wind pressure-controlled ventilation grilles.
Another way is to simply open a window regularly for a certain amount of time. Keep in mind that the thermostat will respond to a possible cold air flow in winter. Briefly lower the thermostat during airing and then set it to the desired temperature.
Ways of heat transport
Heat transport occurs in homes and other buildings in various ways, namely:
- By conduction or conduction, such as through walls.
- By convection or air flow such as, for example, rising air from a radiator.
- Radiation such as the energy of the sun reaches the earth.
- By evaporation and condensation. With this method of heat transport, heat can be extracted at a certain location by evaporation, which is released again by condensation at another location.
Types of insulation material
Insulation material often consists largely of air, such as polyurethane foam. That material contains a large number of closed tiny bubbles. Another commonly used insulation material is glass wool. There are also a number of natural insulation materials such as:
- cellulose flakes
- recycled cotton
- wood wool cement board
- wood wool
- cotton fiber
- paper fibers
- sheep wool
- straw bales
However, natural insulation materials must be treated if they come into constant contact with moisture. Proper treatment is fungicidal and sometimes also fire-resistant.